A Russian national was arrested in Bali for allegedly attempting to smuggle a psychedelic drug known as DMT through a courier service from Ukraine. 

The Bali chapter of the national narcotics agency (BNNP Bali) intercepted a package from the eastern European country earlier this month after customs officials grew suspicious of the shipment.

According to BNNP Bali Chief Gde Sugianyar Dwi Putra, an x-ray imaging of the package showed a piece of wood authorities suspect contained illegal drugs. 

The agency then delivered the package to the listed address ⁠⁠— a villa in South Kuta ⁠— on May 19, where it was received by a Russian national identified as AG. At a press conference today, Sugianyar said authorities seized about 194 grams of DMT and the 32-year-old was arrested on the same day. 

He has been charged with violation of articles under Indonesia’s 2009 Narcotics Law, and faces a maximum sentence of 12 years in prison. 

DMT, which is sometimes referred to as Dimitri or “spirit molecule,” is classified as a Category I illegal drug in Indonesia — on par with heroin, cocaine, and marijuana.

According to Sugianyar, the drug’s hallucinogenic effects are the most severe among all kinds of drugs. DMT, which naturally occurs in many plant species, has been used for centuries in religious ceremonies in a number of South American cultures, he added.

Read more news and updates from Bali here.

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the island of Bali

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